Photo Credit: John Sullivan

Willow Run has a deep history of innovation and was initially built by Henry Ford as an advanced aircraft manufacturing facility during World War II. It was redeveloped by General Motors in the 1950s as a powertrain plant that operated until 2010.

Riveting a center wing section for a B-24E (Liberator) bomber in the horizontal position at Ford’s big Willow Run plant.  National Archives and Records Administration, 196387.

Now, it will become the premiere national facility for mobility and advanced automotive testing and product development.

The center is uniquely positioned to accommodate the broad needs of industry and government with its capabilities to test vehicles, roads, infrastructure and communication systems, while providing room to grow and adapt as technology dictates. The site comes with a number of desirable features and structures already in place including double overpasses, a railroad crossing and a highway loop to test at sustained highway speeds. Testing can occur during all four seasons, day and night, in sun, rain, ice and snow. These elements help to create the perfect environment for testing and setting national standards for mobility technologies before vehicles and other products are deployed. The center will also serve as a development facility that will allow companies to lease space for office and research use, garages and other amenities.

The American Center for Mobility will expand the region’s business incubation and acceleration capabilities while bringing great economic opportunity to southeast Michigan and the United States.

The reactivation of the Willow Run site reinforces Michigan’s global position as the automotive leader while creating new innovations that will drive the future of mobility.

Siemens and ACM announce expanded partnership to advance the next generation of connected vehicles

Siemens Intelligent Traffic Systems will provide connected vehicle technology and smart traffic control infrastructure to the American Center for Mobility for automated and connected vehicle testing.

YPSILANTI TWP., Mich. September 6, 2018 – The American Center for Mobility (ACM) is excited to announce its second partnership with Siemens. Siemens Intelligent Traffic Systems (ITS) will provide approximately $1 million in state-of-the-art ITS infrastructure, software, and engineering support to aid ACM in developing real-world testing and validation of connected and automated vehicles (CAVs). The newest agreement between Siemens and ACM adds physical infrastructure, software applications, and analytics to the Virtual Simulation and Testing solutions provided by Siemens PLM, announced earlier this year. Under the terms of this new agreement Siemens ITS will also have a seat on ACM’s Industry Advisory Board (IAB).

“This expanded partnership with Siemens enables ACM to be outfitted with the best infrastructure and applications to benefit our testers,” said Soraya Kim, Chief Innovation Officer of the American Center for Mobility.  “Our goal is to provide our testers the means for exhaustive validation methodologies and comprehensive regulations for the safe deployment of connected vehicle technologies–something I am confident this extended partnership accomplishes.”

“Michigan has done an incredible job of ensuring its position as a leading technology hub for future transportation solutions, and the American Center for Mobility is an important cornerstone of that effort,” explained Marcus Welz, CEO of Siemens Intelligent Traffic Systems. “As a company that is transforming today’s digitalized environment for many different transportation applications, we realize the importance of being involved with the type of research and testing that is happening at this center and its eco-system.”

Dave Lauzun, Vice President of Automotive & Transportation Industries at Siemens PLM added, “Now, having both our virtual and physical assets at the Center will ensure a comprehensive validation of today’s – and tomorrow’s – mobility ecosystem.”

Siemens joins a long list of companies supporting ACM, including its founders AT&T, Visteon Corporation, Toyota, Ford and Hyundai America Technical Center Inc., and sponsors Microsoft, Subaru of America, Inc., and Adient; and partners Microsoft, Intertek and Deloitte.

Siemens intelligent Traffic Systems, a leader in Connected Vehicle and intelligent transportation technologies, is working with cities including Tampa, FL , New York, NY, Las Vegas, NV and Ann Arbor, MI to design and deploy these types of intelligent systems. Siemens is also a member of the USDOT Affiliated Test Bed for Connected Vehicle technologies, a group pursuing wide-spread deployment of wireless communication systems between vehicles and road infrastructure.

For more information about Siemens latest connected vehicle technology, visit

About Siemens Mobility

Siemens Mobility is a legally separate entity of Siemens AG. With digitalization, Siemens Mobility is enabling mobility operators worldwide to make infrastructure intelligent, increase value sustainably over the entire lifecycle, enhance passenger experience and guarantee availability. A leader in transport solutions for more than 160 years, Siemens Mobility is constantly innovating its portfolio in its core areas of rolling stock, rail automation and electrification, turnkey systems, intelligent traffic systems as well as related services. In fiscal year 2017, which ended on September 30, 2017, the former Siemens Mobility Division posted revenue of €8,1billion and had around 28,400 employees worldwide. Further information is available at:

About the American Center for Mobility

The American Center for Mobility is a nonprofit testing, education and product development facility for future mobility, designed to enable safe validation and self-certification of connected and automated vehicle technology, and to accelerate the development of voluntary standards. ACM is one of 10 U.S. DOT designated Automated Vehicle Proving Grounds in the U.S. The Center is a joint initiative with the State of Michigan founded in partnership with the Michigan Department of Transportation, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the University of Michigan, Business Leaders for Michigan and Ann Arbor SPARK. It is also part of PlanetM, a collaborative that represents Michigan’s unique and vast mobility ecosystem, connecting resources and opportunities for its consortium of members. To learn more about ACM, visit

# # #

American Center for Mobility Media Contact:
Tracey L. Shavers Jr.

Siemens Mobility, Inc Media Contact:
Elizabeth Cho

Past Releases:

American Center for Mobility Announces Kirk Steudle as Interim President, CEO

Automated Vehicles will Create a Shift in Workforce Demands

Toyota Research Institute Joins Study of Workforce Impact from Automated Vehicles

American Center for Mobility establishes partnership with international proving grounds,harmonizes CAV testing protocols and best practices

Siemens strengthens position in connected and autonomous vehicles through partnership with American Center for Mobility

IEEE and American Center for Mobility Agree to Collaborate on Technical Standards for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles

American Center for Mobility, State of Michigan Celebrate Grand Opening

Adient announces partnership with the American Center for Mobility

American Center for Mobility Partners with MSU, Texas A&M Transportation Institute on Workforce Study

Snyder and Michigan tout American Center for Mobility’s rapid growth, success at NAIAS

American Center for Mobility Open for Testing

American Center for Mobility announces Intertek will serve as its operations and maintenance partner

Visteon Partners with American Center for Mobility as Founding Member, Driving Development of Autonomous Vehicles

Hyundai America Technical Center Invests $5 Million in American Center for Mobility

American Center for Mobility Leads Collaborative Effort on Education, Workforce Development with 15 Michigan Colleges and Universities

American Center for Mobility Issues Request for Partnership to Develop HQ, Labs

Ford Motor Co. pledges $5 million to support the American Center for Mobility

U.S. DOT New Automated Driving Systems Guidance in Alignment with American Center for Mobility

Toyota to Collaborate with the American Center for Mobility

American Center for Mobility CEO Testifies on Self-Driving Vehicles for U.S. Senate Committee

American Center for Mobility signs agreements with Institute of Transportation Engineers, SAE International in effort to fast-track connected, automated vehicle standards

Angelo lafrate Construction Company awarded $24 million contract for connected, automated vehicle test bed

American Center for Mobility designated by US Department of Transportation as national automated vehicle proving ground

AT&T and the American Center for Mobility Fuel the Future of Automated Driving

Snyder and Michigan celebrate American Center for Mobility groundbreaking at Willow Run (PDF)

The American Center for Mobility Supports Federal AV Guidance (PDF)

Agreement Reached on Willow Run Purchase (PDF)